By  on March 20, 2008

The top 20 most-viewed Paris fall collections on"Paris always crystallizes the season," said Linda Fargo, senior vice president, fashion office and store presentation, Bergdorf Goodman. "It's clear that there's a balance of options, dominated by sharp, clean, neo-ladylike dressing [on the one hand]...and soft, languid romanticism on the other." Collections widely praised by retailers included Balenciaga, Yves Saint Laurent, Dries Van Noten, Lanvin, Junya Watanabe, Givenchy, Chanel and Alexander McQueen. Movers and shakers included number one-ranked Lanvin, which jumped from fourth place last season to take the top spot from Chanel, and Givenchy — which leaped from number 16 last season to number 10. 1. LANVIN Page views: 2,601,017 Topping the rankings for the first time, "Alber Elbaz made modern glamour look effortless in the beautiful fall collection he showed for Lanvin, which centered around all sorts of ribbons," said WWD. He kept a dark scheme throughout, but inserted glittering Deco-inspired jewels to brighten up the runway.2. CHRISTIAN DIOR Page views: 2,521,723 With Baby Jane Holzer, Raquel Welch and Mrs. Robinson on his mind, John Galliano showed a glamorous, yet wearable, collection. There were chic furs, ladylike accessories and dresses done up in prints and flashy embroideries. Suits came in myriad colors, often worn with Stephen Jones' hats.3. ALEXANDER MCQUEEN Page views: 2,243,061The fairy tale Alexander McQueen spun on his runway revealed a breathtaking lineup. Inspired by a 600-year-old elm tree in his garden as well as a trip to India, the designer showed dark, Victorian Goth looks, like the black dresses over petticoats. Models wore dresses encrusted with jewels or under cutaway frock coats. 4. BALENCIAGA Page views: 2,228,196Nicolas Ghesquière delivered a darker, more mature fall — one that "was on-trend, yet light-years ahead of the pack," said WWD. He showed dark, sultry pieces, and worked with everything from wool crepe to plastic and latex. Ghesquière sent out vibrant velvet tops and a lineup of imaginative dresses.5. LOUIS VUITTON Page views: 1,995,832 Marc Jacobs showed a collection full of structure. Stripped of decoration, his pieces consisted of cozy fabrics — blanket cashmeres and corduroy were in full effect. Zip-up coats and jackets were molded to torsos, while skirts revealed roller-coaster curves. And the bags? Ultrachic, clean shapes in embossed skins.6. CHANEL Page views: 1,959,341Karl Lagerfeld's primary motif for Chanel's fall was to work a curve, "which resulted in linear cutaway shapes such as jackets and coats that opened to show the pieces beneath, or dresses with a subtle capelike effect in back," said WWD. He showed lean suits, frothed-up miniskirts, ribbed cozy knits and belted coats.7. JOHN GALLIANO Page views: 1,608,025 Following an hour-plus wait for John Galliano's fall show, guests were treated to quite the production, as the venue was done up like an old movie set. Galliano sent out playful, colorful frocks, like the girlish dresses, as well as glam furs and a blue sweater coat with impressive embroidery.8. YVES SAINT LAURENT Page views: 1,517,944 Yves Saint Laurent's girl is now bold, confident and ultrachic. Stefano Pilati "sent out an army of latter-day power women uniform in attitude and guise," said WWD. He showed wool dresses with curved panels and sculptured jackets. Even when Pilati softened up, "restraint prevailed, as with a teal jersey dress."9. CHLOE Page views: 1,495,553Paulo Melim Andersson showed pretty chiffon tea dresses in Seventies-esque garden-floral prints, tailored vests, beaded dresses and patterned blouses. But the effort proved to be Melim Andersson's last for the house: Two weeks later, he was pushed out, to be replaced by longtime design team member Hannah MacGibbon.10. GIVENCHY Page views: 1,410,231

Riccardo Tisci looked to his trips to Latin America for fall and showed an elegant collection full of old-world conquistador style. Models emerged in gold-chain accessories, as well as sexy gypsy blouses and toreador-style jackets. Black lace and Moorish-jewel decorations accompanied the pieces as well.11. MIU MIU Page views: 1,312,332Miuccia Prada's take on fall for Miu Miu? Sporty. She showed variations on a sporty jumpsuit, like the zip-up sheath, a jacket over biker shorts and even a thermal onesie — all of which featured press-on monograms that could be the hot new trend. Accessories came in the form of galoshes and retro-looking bowling bags. 12. STELLA MCCARTNEY Page views: 1,276,222Stella McCartney's fall runway was full of romantic, feminine pieces, like the bunched chiffon dresses and short, strapless lace frocks. She went big on her range of coats worn over fleecy boots, and with the sweater dresses embellished with shields.13. HERMES Page views: 1,215,284 Timeless staples were in full force for Jean Paul Gaultier's Hermès collection. He showed cashmere wrap skirts, silk-scarf blouses, cashmere peacoats, handkerchief dresses, classic trenches, suede blazers and handbags galore. Throughout, Gaultier used the house's paisley scarf prints to accompany his looks.14. NINA RICCI Page views: 1,183,701Working with a palette mainly consisting of orange, copper and mauve, Olivier Theyskens sent out jackets over silk chiffon blouses, printed dresses, silk blazers and waistcoats. "Slim silhouettes were modern and arty in their slender curves, strongest in the endless array of gorgeous jackets," noted WWD. 15. DRIES VAN NOTEN Page views: 1,180,298Dries Van Noten went heavy on prints for fall, after having traveled to Switzerland and Lyon, France, to scour the archives of the great fabric houses. He showed tunics over skirts or pants, sweaters with graphic constructions, serenely shaped column dresses, tailored jackets and aged-looking furs.16. VALENTINO Page views: 1,165,894 Alessandra Facchinetti turned out her first-ever collection for Valentino — and it's likely to please fans, especially the younger set. She played with recurring motifs, like the ribbon-swirl rosettes and pleat-front skirts. Coats and dresses were standouts, as were the white Sixties-ish coat and those signature red evening gowns.17. VIKTOR & ROLF Page views: 1,163,085Declaring their fall collection "a glamorous protest," Viktor Horsting and Rolf Snoeren sent out looks screaming the words "No" and "Dream On." The messages were delivered on a gray flannel coat, a T-shirt, even down one sleeve of a jacket. Flashes of color stood out in a slick red sheath and a wine chemise.18. JEAN PAUL GAULTIER Page views: 1,158,836 Opening his show to the music of Michael Jackson's "Thriller," Gaultier sent out "a nimble dance between animal-kingdom costumery and straight-up sportswear," said WWD. He showed heavy doses of animal prints, belted trenches, mammoth coats, puffed-up jackets, stoles, messenger bags and fur-trapper hats.19. VIVIENNE WESTWOOD Page views: 906,683Calling the collection "Chaos Point," Vivienne Westwood sent out her familiar unruly taffeta dresses — 17th century in shape. She even invited British elementary school children to "hand-paint the collection in a barrage of charmingly messy designs and vibrant colors," noted WWD.20. YOHJI YAMAMOTO Page views: 843,589Yohji Yamamoto, who played the guitar while featuring his fall collection, worked in beautifully complicated cuts, volumized skirts and wool jerseys. Other hits were the tweed jackets nipped at the waist, the chic coats and the new Yohji bag — an oversize, shoulder-strap affair that he designed in collaboration with Hermès.LANVIN, CHRISTIAN DIOR, JOHN GALLIANO, YVES SAINT LAURENT, CHLOE, GIVENCHY, STELLA MCCARTNEY, NINA RICCI, VALENTINO, VIKTOR & ROLF AND JEAN PAUL GAULTIER PHOTOS BY DELPHINE ACHARD; ALEXANDER MCQUEEN, BALENCIAGA, LOUIS VUITTON, CHANEL, MIU MIU, HERMES, DRIES VAN NOTEN AND YOHJI YAMAMOTO BY GIOVANNI GIANNONI; VIVIENNE WESTWOOD BY DOMINIQUE MAITRE

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